UAE businesses confident about 2013 growth

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A view from Dubai Creek.
A view from Dubai Creek. Dubai Economic Department’s latest business confidence survey reveals that UAE businesses are confident of achieving continued 2013 growth as they head into the second quarter. Photo-Paulo Keller

The quarterly business confidence survey conducted by the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED) reveals that businesses in Dubai are confident of achieving continued growth in the second quarter of 2013.

The survey highlights that confidence runs particularly high among small and medium enterprises (SME) and export firms. These businesses scored 113 points during the first quarter of 2013 in the composite Business Confidence Index (BCI). As there is general optimism about sustained growth in the overall UAE economy, around 86 percent of UAE businesses expect increased sales and profitability. At the same time, 98 percent of businesses intend to increase or maintain their headcount during the next quarter.

An estimated 91 percent of firms are also upbeat about the growth trends, expecting an improvement or stability in business conditions during the second quarter of 2013.

“Economic activity in Dubai is on a firmer ground, especially with key sectors such as tourism, logistics and aviation flourishing and real estate on a recovery path. The services and retail sectors are also signaling strong growth, which reaffirms Dubai’s reputation as a resilient and vibrant economy.” — Sami Al Qamzi, Director General of DED

The growing business confidence in the UAE shows that efforts of the government and private sector to achieve sustainable economic growth are bearing fruit. Small businesses and exporters remain key to achieve the broader economic aims of the Emirate and an increase in their confidence points towards greater job opportunities in the marketplace. The survey notes that business revenue growth is expected to be driven by higher volumes, as 80 percent of respondents expect prices to remain stable.

About 49 percent of the respondents intend to beef-up their inventory levels to meet increased demand. While manufacturing businesses are most optimistic about sales and profits, firms in the service sector are likely to hire more employees. During the next 12 months, about 55 percent of businesses have shown an intention to invest in capacity expansion. During the same period, about 40 percent of firms are also likely to upgrade their technology.

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